TWO British Army officers are nearing the end of their first operational deployment together as husband and wife.
Rhys and Rebecca Pogson-Hughes-Emanuel, better known as Captain Becky P-H-E and Captain Rhys P-H-E, left for Helmand Province in September. This is the first operational tour for Becky, 33, originally from Rugby. She is Second-in-Command of 11 Armoured Company, 2 Close Support Battalion, Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineer.
Rhys, 34 from Bridgend in Wales is on his second operational tour, as Second-in-Command with 39 Armoured Engineer Squadron, 32 Engineer Regiment.
He said: “This tour has been very different to my Iraq tour. The biggest contrast is the Afghan security forces now taking the lead. The communication facilities here are very good which helps a great deal in terms of keeping in touch with our families.”
Becky and Rhys both joined the Army in their early twenties and met whilst completing an inter-service degree at Aston University, Birmingham where they studied full-time during the week and ran exercises as Platoon Commanders for Wellbeck Defence College cadets at the weekends.
“Rhys was a year ahead of me on the undergraduate scheme. We met in 2010, got engaged nine months later and married in 2011,” Becky said.
The couple have probably seen less of each other in the build-up to this tour even though they were living together in Germany. This was down to the pre-deployment training and being away at different times. On tour they try and meet up a few times a week.
Becky said: “Being on tour together means you have to make sure you’re acting in a professional way and are sending out the right message. There’s no rule saying we can’t go into a room together for a chat, but it’s implied that you conduct yourself in a way that is professional at all times.”